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(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

Karachi, the financial capital of Pakistan and the capital of the province of Sindh has been much adored since the British times for its economic potential. Today, Karachi is the most populous city in the world and a major shipping seaport to the otherwise landlocked country of Pakistan. The love meted out by the people of Karachi to Quaid-e-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder and Father of the Nation is visible in various monuments, building and landmarks associated & named after him. Karachi is also well-known for its archaeological sites at Thatta, Mohenjodaro and KotDiji. The city knows well how to blend the past with the present to protect its heritage for the future generations to come.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
Getting Around in Karachi

The cheapest way to get around in Karachi is to use the buses. But on the flip side, they are dangerous because of reckless driving and overflowing passengers. Rather than endangering your life, its better to hire a taxi or car in Karachi. If you are travelling alone, wave for an auto rickshaw that is comparatively cheaper to a taxi. Though noisy, these three wheelers can easily steer through traffic jams and narrow lanes to help you reach the destination quickly. If you intend to travel to other parts of Pakistan then Karachi is linked by rail to the rest of the country by the Pakistan Railways. The Karachi City Station and Karachi Cantonment Railway Station are the two main railway stations of departure/arrival.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – St. Patricks Cathedral
(Pakistan) – Karachi – St. Patricks Cathedral

Bus System
Local people in Karachi use minibuses, coaches, and large buses as means of transport to travel within the city. Tourists should be aware that these buses are often overflowing with people. Although not advisable, travelling in a bus could provide an insight into the daily lifestyle, tradition and culture of the locals. Travel at your own risk.
The best way to traverse Karachi using public transport is to simply wave a taxi. However, before you start off with the taxi ride, make sure that the cab meter is working and if not, negotiate the fair for the destination beforehand. Yellow cabs are quite popular in Karachi but for slightly lower fares you can hire the bulky black & yellow taxis that have larger seating & luggage capacity.
Car Rental
Hiring a taxi in a busy town as Karachi can be quite frustrating. They are often expensive and inaccessible in crowds. Also, there is big chance of getting ripped off if you fail to notice the cab meter. However, if you own the confidence to navigate the roads of Karachi behind the steering wheel, then hiring a car is the right choice. Driving a car in Karachi is a dare devils job considering the roads and traffic sense. Essentials like stopping at signals and positioning your car for turns is not necessarily followed. But the safety and independence derived from rental car driving is one of its kind. Best is to hire a car with a driver.
Almost all parts of Pakistan are well-linked by rail operated by Pakistan Railways. Karachi is home to two important railway stations - Karachi City Station and Karachi Cantonment Railway Station. Tourists can travel to various Pakistani cities such as Multan, Quetta, Lahore, Peshawar, and Islamabad by rail.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

Fast Facts
Karachi Airport, commonly known as Jinnah International Airport is a strategically located gateway to the Far East and Europe. The airport provides facilities for almost 6 million passengers, with over 50,000 annual aircraft movements and contributes Rs. 3 billion in economic benefits to the region.

All foreigners coming to Pakistan need a valid passport. Tourists from the following countries do not need visa to enter Pakistan for the period specified as under;
1. Iceland, Maldives, Singapore, South Korea, Zambia and Mauritius, for 3 months.
2. Hong Kong, Nepal and Western Samoa, for 1 month.
3. Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, for unlimited period Landing permit/transit visa for 30 days shall be given at entry points/airports, by Pakistan Immigration, free of cost, to genuine tourists/ businessmen.

Basic unit of currency is Pakistani rupee which divides into 100 paisa. Currency notes of 1, 2, 5, 10, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 rupees are in use.

Credit Cards
American Express is the most widely accepted card. Master card and Visa are also good. Dinner club and other cards have more limited use.

Generally hotels and restaurants add on a 5 – 10% service charge to the bill, but tipping or what is locally known, as baksheesh is an accepted norm.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

Useful Numbers
Police: 15
Ambulance: 115
Fire: 16
Hospital: (92-21) 7729719
Time: 14
Weather: (92-21) 4572811

220 V, 50 Hz AC.

Health Risks
Yellow Fever vaccination certificate is required for travelers arriving from endemic zone. Vaccination against cholera, hepatitis, typhoid and polio is recommended. Malaria risk exists in Pakistan throughout the year. All foreigners coming to stay in Pakistan for over one year, require AIDS free certificate.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

Time Zone
Standard Time is GMT plus 5 hours.

Business Hours
Office Hours: 9 am to 5 PM with one hour break from Monday to Thursday and with two hours break on Fridays, Saturday is half working day from 9 am to 1:30 PM without break. Sunday is off.

19 Jan Ashoura.
20 Mar Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi (Birth of the Prophet).
23 Mar Pakistan Day.
14 Aug Independence Day.
2 Oct Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan).
9 Nov Allama Muhammad Iqbal Day.
9 Dec Eidul-Azha (Feast of the Sacrifice).
25 Dec Quaid-e-Azam's Birthday.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

7 Jan Ashoura.
9 Mar Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi (Birth of the Prophet).
23 Mar Pakistan Day.
14 Aug Independence Day.
20/21 Sep Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan).
9 Nov Allama Muhammad Iqbal Day.
27/28 Nov Eidul-Azha (Feast of the Sacrifice).
25 Dec Quaid-e-Azam's Birthday.

Karachi has a sub-tropical and temperate climate, with sunny, blue skies expected most of the year (occasional monsoon rains in summer).

Light woolen in winter and light tropical in summer.Women, in public places, should wear long skirts or pants and full sleeve blouses.

GDP Growth Rate

2.9% (2000 est.)

Machinery, petroleum, petroleum products, chemicals, transportation equipment, edible oils, grains, pulses, flour.

Textiles (garments, cotton cloth, and yarn)

Trading Partners
Hong Kong, UK, Germany, Saudi Arabia, UAE, US, Japan, Malaysia

Air Conditioners, Chemicals, Cement, Ship-Building, Shoe Making, Printing Paper, Tyre& Tube, Hosiery, Oil Refining, Textiles.

Pakistan is an Islamic republic with its capital at Islamabad. It has four provinces: Balochistan, North West Frontier Province (NWFP), Punjab and Sindh. Their respective capitals are Quetta, Peshawar, Lahore and Karachi. In addition to provinces, are the Federal Administered Northern Areas (F.A.N.A) and Federal Administered Tribal Areas (F.A.T.A). Pakistan has a federal structure. Parliament consists of National Assembly and the Senate. Members of the National Assembly are directly elected on the adult franchise base and there term of office is five years. The National Assembly determine the major policy issue and passes annual budget and legislation. It elects the Prime Minister from among its members. The Prime Minister forms his / her cabinet from among members of the Assembly and Senate. Provinces have their own elected legislative Assemblies and Chief Ministers. Majority of the members, of the upper house are elected by the Provincial Assemblies.

(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts
(Pakistan) – Karachi – Fast Facts

Karachi, the largest and the most popular city of Pakistan presents an interesting and colorful combination of the old and new. The narrow twisting lanes and alleys of the old city throb with life alongside wide metallic roads and elegant modern buildings. Within the city, talented artisans with age-old skills produce handicrafts of exquisite beauty. Karachi offers a variety of pleasant attractions: wide sunny beaches, deep-sea fishing, yachting, golf and horseracing all year round. It restaurants cater to a wide choice of Pakistani and western cuisine. Its markets and bazaars offer an endless variety of exciting shopping including indigenous handicrafts, particularly rugs and carpets of rare design and beauty.

Pakistan: 164.7 million

Ethnic Groups
Punjabi, Sindhi, Pashtun (Pathan), Baloch, Muhajir (immigrants from India at the time of partition and their descendants)

Punjabi 48%, Sindhi 12%, Siraiki (a Punjabi variant) 10%, Pashtu 8%, Urdu (official) 8%, Balochi 3%, Hindko 2%, Brahui 1%, English (official and lingua franca of Pakistani elite and most government ministries), Burushaski, and other 8%


Muslim (97%), Hindu (1.5%), Christian (1%) and several other minorities.


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